Watson receives Texas Tech 2012 Distinguished Engineer Award

Photo of Dr. Karan WatsonDr. Karan Watson, Regents Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Texas A&M University, has been named a recipient of the Texas Tech University 2012 Distinguished Engineer Award.

Watson currently is provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at Texas A&M.

The Distinguished Engineer Award was established during the 1966-67 academic year to recognize the most outstanding alumni of the college. Since that time, 207 former students have received this honor. Recipients of the award must be distinguished in their profession, an inspiration to their peers, and have demonstrated a continuing interest in areas outside the field of engineering.

"The Distinguished Engineer Award is an opportunity for the Whitacre College of Engineering to recognize our exceptional alumni," said Al Sacco Jr., dean of the college. "Our entire scholarly community is proud of the accomplishments of our latest group of alumni to earn the title Distinguished Engineer. These individuals have set themselves apart in various and unique ways as outstanding engineers and business leaders and are a testimony to the exceptional education provided by our faculty and staff to all our students: past, present and future."

Watson graduated from Texas Tech with a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering in 1977, a Master of Science in electrical engineering in 1981, and a doctorate in electrical engineering in 1982. She joined the Texas A&M electrical and computer engineering faculty in 1983. She later served in associate dean positions in the Dwight Look College of Engineering from 1991 to 2002. She worked in the provost's office in associate provost, vice provost and interim positions from 2002 until 2011. She also is president-elect for Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology Inc. (ABET) and will serve as the president from October 2012 to October 2013.

She is a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and the American Society for Engineering Education. Her awards and recognitions include the U.S. President's Award for Mentoring Minorities and Women in Science and Technology, the American Association for the Advancement of Science mentoring award, the IEEE International Undergraduate Teaching Award, the Dwight Look College of Engineering Crawford Teaching Award, and two University-level Distinguished Achievement Awards from The Texas A&M University Association of Former Students, one in student relations in 1992 and one in administration in 2010.

In 2003–2004, she served as a Senior Fellow of the National Academy of Engineering Center for the Advancement of Scholarship in Engineering Education. Since 1991, she has served as an accreditation evaluator and commissioner and is now on the board of directors for ABET, Inc., formerly the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In October of 2011, she was named President-Elect ABET with her full term as President beginning later this year.